By Ben Stroup
Senior co-captain Hailey Pickelheimer scored to break a 1-1 tie with 20 minutes to play and the defense made it stand up, lifting the Olentangy Liberty girls soccer team to its third straight district final with a solid 2-1 semifinal win over visiting Worthington Kilbourne Tuesday in Powell.
The first 20 minutes came and went with a few chances, but nothing on the scoreboard.
That all changed with 17:19 left in the first half, though, as Sarina Dirrig fired a feed from Emma Waters, the team’s other captain, into the back of the net to give her team a 1-0 edge.
The Wolves got back to even when Annie Mosca scored less than a minute into the second half, but Pickelheimer’s late tally proved to be the difference.
Emma Campbell finished with two saves in the Patriot goal.
With the win, Liberty will face Thomas Worthington, a 2-1 winner over Gahanna, in Saturday’s D-I district final at Westerville South. The opening kick is set for 4 p.m.
Olentangy 1, Hilliard Davidson 0
Stephanie Burzynski scored the game’s lone goal on a penalty kick and Kelsey Hill made three saves to preserve the shutout as the Braves knocked off the visiting Wildcats in a Division I district semifinal Tuesday in Lewis Center.
Next up, Olentangy will take on third-seeded Dublin Coffman in Saturday’s D-I district final at Westerville South. Action is set to start at 7 p.m.
Hilliard Darby 3, Orange 2
The Pioneers didn’t have any trouble scoring early, but the Panthers used a second-half goal to break a 2-all deadlock and nab a Division I district semifinal win Tuesday in Hilliard.
Hannah Sargent finished with five saves for Orange.
Hartley 6, Buckeye Valley 1
Karri Stadulis scored three goals, the last in overtime, as Liberty edged visiting Upper Arlington 3-2 in a district semifinal Tuesday in Powell.
Katie Flanagan finished with nine saves in the crease for the Patriots, who advance to take on Thomas Worthington in Saturday’s district final at Dublin Jerome.
Follow Ben Stroup on Twitter @delgazette_ben.